Just like the Pierrot Game watch – this fun timepiece uses the same circuitboard with a different LCD, this time the sports-themed Soccer.
Game watches generally are a testament to the talent of designers who are shown a watch LCD with typical time features and are told to go and make something fun with this, with a number of limitations like how much memory is left in the chip to run the game, how much space (or not) there is to work with, and bearing in mind that LCDs and circuitboards have a limited number of tracks they can use.
So then to actually produce a very playable game, with an increasing level of difficulty, score keeping, limiting the player to three lives etc is nothing short of wondrous.
These days it would be far simpler — LCDs are what we now refer to when we are talking about an entire pixel-based screen, rather than a limited number of segments, and the technology progression of silicon chips since the 1980s means that creating a game watch today would be (comparatively) a piece of cake!
Which makes you wonder why watch companies no longer do it.
Most likely the proliferation of smartwatch devices around today means that games are not only possible, but almost expected; which is true, although they often lack the playability and general fun factor of these older games.
Learning the game on this watch is easy — mastering it is far more difficult.
When the game starts, segments fall from the top to where your player is at the bottom. If you ‘catch’ a segment it becomes a soccer ball for you to kick. Getting 10-20 points in this way is very achievable. After that, though, it speeds up. It pauses for a few seconds every 50 points to play you a success tune before getting faster still.
There’s only a two-digit counter so you might think 100 is the top score — think again!
Once you get to 100, a soccer ball icon appears on the right to count the hundreds as you begin adding up the digits again!
Fun and challenging, getting a big score is possible — but definitely not easy.
Team this up with 12/24 hour time, a daily melody alarm, hourly chime and date, and you’ve got a great watch. Just a shame there aren’t more of them around today…